Memon vows strict action concerning assault on journalists -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Memon vows strict action concerning assault on journalists

ISLAMABAD- Minister for Information and Media Development Nisar A Memon assured editors that strict punitive action would be initiated against all those found responsible for the Faisalabad incident after completion of the inquiry being conducted to ascertain the facts regarding the matter.

He was talking to the CPNE President, Mujib-ur-Rehman Shami, over telephone. He also spoke to the President PFUJ, I A Rashid and some other journalists in this regard.

Strongly regretting the incident, the minister reiterated that the government held journalists and the profession of journalism in high esteem and it was committed to uphold the freedom of the Press in the country. “The government is very keen to maintain cordial and tension-free relations with the press and it has always welcomed healthy and constructive criticism,” he said.

He flayed attempts by certain political circles to exploit the incident for deriving political mileage with a view to driving a wedge between the government and the journalistic community.

The minister expressed the view that the incident could have been the result of over-eagerness on the part of some lower-level district administration official. He said the provincial governor had already ordered an inquiry into the incident. Its report is being awaited and all those found responsible would be brought to book as and when the report is submitted to the government. He sympathised with the journalists who sustained injuries by making calls to Faisalabad and wished them early recovery.

Talking to BBC the minister said those involved in the incident will be punished. “I think the action of using batons is the action of police and that of administration and the ministry has no concern with it. I regret that it happened. It is a regrettable incident. It should not have happened.”

He said the president has already constituted an enquiry into it. This incident is not related to the freedom of press, he said. This is an incident, which took place owing to administrative reasons, he said. “It will further strengthen the freedom of press because we shall ourselves talk to the people concerned and those who did it will be punished,” he added.
Source: The News
Date:4/17/2002